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A capsular polysaccharide-expressing live vaccine suppresses streptococcal toxic shock-like syndrome and provides sequence type-independent protection during Streptococcus suis infection

By Zhiwei Li, Peixi Chang, Jiali Xu, Chen Tan, Xiaohong Wang, Weicheng Bei, Jinquan Li

Posted 31 May 2018
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/335349

Streptococcus suis (S. suis) is an encapsulated zoonotic pathogen, which is responsible for bacterial meningitis and streptococcal toxic shock-like syndrome (STSLS). Despite many attempts to develop an effective vaccine, none is currently available. Here, a capsular polysaccharide (CPS)-expressing attenuated mutant 2015033 was constructed by deleting five virulence-associated factors (sly, scpA, ssnA, fhb, and ssads) in an outbreak S. suis strain SC19. Genes mentioned above are associated with either innate immunity-evading or tissue barrier-invading. Deletion of these genes did not impact the growth ability and CPS generation of 2015033, and the mutant exhibited no hemolytic activity to erythrocytes and no cytotoxicity to different epithelial or endothelial cells. In addition, 2015033 was more easily eliminated by whole human blood in vitro and by mouse blood in vivo. In addition, 2015033 showed a diminished invasive ability in different mouse organs (brain, lung, and liver) and avirulent properties in mice associated with weak inflammation-inducing ability. Immunization with 2015033 triggered T cell-dependent immunity and this immunity suppressed STSLS during SC19 infection by inhibiting excessive proinflammatory responses. In addition, immunization with 2015033 successfully conferred sequence type (STs)-independent protection to mice during heterogeneous infections (ST1, ST7, and ST658). This study presents the feasibility of the strategy of multi-gene deletion for the development of promising live vaccines against invasive encapsulated pathogens.

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